Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Eternal Darkness of Eberron

About a year ago, I was asked by a friend if I would be interested in joining his Eberron campaign.  I had played in an Eberron game before and I thought it was a great setting in which to play D&D.  It had a little bit of everything you could want: intrigue, mystery, noir, and many shades of gray.  I jumped at the chance.  Besides, the Heroes of Shadow book had just been released and I felt that the Star Pact Binder, a class that controls and manipulates Lovecraftian powers to his own advantage, would fit in rather well.

I read up a bit on Eberron and where the "Far Realm" fit into it.  I learned about Xoriat, the mysterious realm that had been sealed generations ago.  Sealed.  Yet, nothing in Lovecraftian horror is ever really sealed.  Using the old Nintendo Gamecube game Eternal Darkness as a model, I began crafting a character who inadvertently found himself in the midst of a Xoriat resurgence.

Not having read enough about Eberron, I felt that artifacts from Xen'drik, the continent of mystery, would be a great way to introduce a sort of Ancient One subplot into the game.  This new character, a professor at Morgrave University in Sharn, came across a crate full of curiosities from the dark continent.  Among those artifacts, he found the Tome.  The Tome opened his mind to a world of madness that lay just beyond the reach of mortal men.  This young professor, realizing that everything he knew did not matter anymore in the face of such horrors, chose to use that very power as a tool.  Using the powers of madness, he would save Eberron from the Eternal Darkness.  I present to you Harlan Lagrasse, Professor of Morgrave University and Binder of the Madness.

The Mad Professor from Morgrave University
With great power comes ... great madness?
The character presented here is actually a little different than the one I first entered the world of Eberron with.  Originally, I had given him the Multiclass Bard feat that gave him Ritual Casting.  We thought it would be interesting to have him conducting rituals and whatnot.  That didn't last long.  By the time I got to replacing the feat, though, Heroes of the Feywild had been released.  "Master of Stories" seemed like a great feat to add to the character.  So, I retrained it.  The version presented here includes the Master of Stories feat instead.
Of course, a few other things changed as I played the character.  Originally, I had chosen one of the Eldritch Blasts as his bonus at-will power.  Later, realizing that Harlan Lagrasse had no effective melee attacks, I swapped it out for the Sorcerer King warlock attack power, Hand of Blight.

A few notes I should include.  Although my Eberron game does not run with Inherent Bonuses, this character was constructed *with* Inherent Bonuses.  Furthermore, I use the Master of Stories feat as it was written in Heroes of the Feywild, pre-eratta.  I have always felt that the multi-class feats that grant healing abilities should be once per encounter; it has always frustrated me that they tend to be once per day.

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